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Slide 1: Introduction

Psychologists have always wondered, does the study of animal behavior really inform the main aspects of human psychology? Research shows that the two fields interrelate as animals have similar sensory and physiological systems to humans. In this case, exploring the emotional reception of animals in natural environments helps to understand how humans perceive predictable and unpredictable circumstances. The relationship also helps to understand the covariance in animal behavior between individuals and environments. In particular, animal behavior informs human psychology by helping to understand emotional responses, behavioral covariances, and mechanistic approaches to temperament.

Slide 2: Animal Behavior and Emotional Responses

The assessment of animal behavioral conditions informs psychology by helping to understand emotional states that affect people’s judgment, attention, and memory. For example, laboratory animals in stressful conditions respond more negatively to ambiguous situations than predictable ones (Nematipour, Krohs & Bračić 2022, p. 976). Exploring such facts helps psychologists to understand why people in stressful, emotional situations, such as fear, depression, or anxiety, interpret their stimuli negatively. Therefore, assessing animal behaviors in predictable and unpredictable conditions helps to understand the human psychology of emotional judgment.

How Does Animal Behavior Inform Human Psychology?

Slide 3: Animal Behavior and Behavioral Covariance

The assessment of animal behavior informs human psychology by showing the factors that lead to covariance in behavioral traits under different circumstances. For example, studying various behaviors allows psychologists to determine human exploration, boldness, temperament, and sociability traits and why some characteristics vary across environments (McMahon, Youatt & Cavigelli 2022, p. 2). Understanding this relationship allows scientists to identify coping strategies, such as physical traits, interrelated behaviors, and psychological processes, that underlie their exhibitions in animals and humans. Hence, studying animal behaviors helps to understand the physiological and psychological processes underlying human actions and provides insightful information on why certain traits vary in different individuals and environments.  

Slide 4: Animal Behavior and Human Mechanistic Approaches

The study of animal behavior also informs human psychology by allowing for the exploration of people’s mechanistic approaches concerning their temperaments. For example, the ease of measuring and characterizing behaviors, such as temperament in animals, has allowed for investigating behavioral traits in natural populations (McMahon, Youatt & Cavigelli 2022, p. 2). Such assessments help psychologists to understand advanced physiological mechanisms underlying temperaments, especially in natural conditions. Therefore, studying animal behaviors helps to understand mechanistic approaches underlying human temperament.

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Slide 5: Animal Behavior and Signal Influence

Animal behavioral studies inform human psychology by showing how signals convey individual states and influence the behaviors of others through physiological processes, like emotional contagion. For example, the analysis of music influence in animals helps to understand the information and manipulation models in humans, highlighting that individuals communicate on their internal states and use them to manipulate recipients’ behaviors (Snowdon 2021, p. 1). The analysis of human-based music through the use of animals helps to explore the value and channels of tailoring sounds to sensory systems and produce desired effects, such as happiness and sadness. Hence, the analysis of music reception and interpretation in animals helps to understand how humans use sensory channels to conceive emotional messages.

Slide 6: Conclusion

The study of animal behaviors provides insight into human psychology concerning emotional responses, behavioral covariances, and mechanistic approaches to temperament. In this case, the field helps psychologists to understand how humans perceive and relay their emotions to the environment. Assessing animal behavior also provides knowledge concerning different behaviors across individuals. In turn, it allows for examining mechanistic approaches that lead to temperament development among people in natural environments. Thus, the field of animal behavior is important since it informs human psychology by allowing for the analysis of individuals’ sensory and behavioral mechanisms.

Reference List

McMahon, EK, Youatt, E & Cavigelli, SA 2022, ‘A physiological profile approach to animal temperament: How to understand the functional significance of individual differences in behavior,’ Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, vol. 289, no. 1966, pp. 1-9, viewed 26 June 2023, DOI:10.1098/rspb.2021.2379.

Nematipour, B, Bračić, M & Krohs, U 2022, ‘Cognitive bias in animal behavior science: A philosophical perspective,’ Animal Cognition, vol. 25, no. 4, pp. 975-990, viewed 26 June 2023, DOI:10.1007/s10071-022-01647-z

Snowdon, CT 2021, ‘Animal signals, music and emotional well-being,’ Animals, vol. 11, no. 9, pp. 1-14, viewed 26 June 2023, DOI:10.3390/ani11092670

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